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Knowledge
Management:
 
 
  
  
 
  

Approach And Activities


 

Presentation Outline

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ëirst, what is knowledge

 xn simplest terms, knowledge is the ability of an actor


to respond to a body of facts and principles
accumulated over a period of time

c    One way to look at knowledge is as the apogee of


 
 
   the following continuum ±
   Data r information r knowledge
 
  
 
 ± Data=1 unit of fact;
± information=aggregation of data;
± knowledge=potential for action on information

± Data and information have intrinsic properties, the quality of


knowledge depends on the properties of the agent
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Jhat is knowledge management

 t its broadest, KM is the µprocess through which


organizations generate value from intellectual and
knowledge based assets¶
c  
 
 
  
    The purpose of KM is to gather, categorize, store
 
   and spread all knowledge that is needed to make the
 
 organization both grow and prosper. xt is not as
much a technology change as it is a cultural change,
but technology is a primary enabler of KM practices.
The value of knowledge assets

 There are two types of knowledge assets ±


± Õ plicit or formal assets like copyrights, patents,
templates, publications, reports, archives, etc.

c   ± Tacit or informal assets that are rooted in human


  experience and include personal belief, perspective, and
 
   values
  
 
    Knowledge assets are often described as the
 

the intellectual capital of an organization
± The value of intellectual capital is often intangible
±  popular measure is the difference between the cost of
capital assets and the cost of replacing them
Knowledge Processes
!     

 
  
 

Sharing & ]lass¶n,


]reation & Dissemination
Enriching Storage &
]apture
Retrieval

c   ‡ Publications
‡ Research
  ‡ Teams ‡ Documentation
‡ Policy advice
‡ Studies

   ‡ Databanks
‡ xnstitution
‡ ssessments
   ‡ ]ommittees -Lessons Learned
‡ ëield Exp. building support
 
   -Best Practices ‡ Seminars/
‡
Dialogue ‡ Networks
 with -Research ëindings forums
Partners
 ‡ Jebsites
‡ Online services
‡ Targets
‡ Reporting
 
 ‡ xncentives
 

 ‡ Systems

‡ Technology
‡ Skills
‡ Resources
The value of KM

 xt is important to manage knowledge assets because

± Organizations compete increasingly on the base of knowledge (the


only sustainable competitive advantage, according to some)

c   ± Most of the work is information based (and often immersed in a


  computing environment)
 
  
  
 
   ± The products, services, and environment are more complex than
  ever before

± Jorkforces are increasingly unstable leading to escalating
demands for knowledge replacement/acquisition

 Knowledge management is fast emerging as a core strategy,


that organizations worldwide are adopting to manage and
leverage organizational knowledge for sustainable business
advantage.
G     

 ëord Motor Company's Manufacturing Best Practices Program


improves the efficiency of manufacturing processes and the
quality of products.

 olls-oyce's Knowledge cquisition and Modeling Process


improves project management processes.
c  
   ¦P's knowledge management program started with the
 
   exploration and production process, but now includes project
   management processes.
 
  
 
  hell Oil's Global Learning and Development involves
continuous learning around the exploration and production
process.

 The Knowledge and Learning Practice at the Jorld ¦ank


xnstitute focused on improving development projects funded
through the Jorld Bank.
The development of KM

 Knowledge began to be viewed as a competitive asset in the 80s,


around the same time that information explosion started
becoming an issue

 The trend was fueled by the development of xT systems which


c   made it simple to store, display, and archive classified, indexed
  information
 
  
  
 
    The process received a fillip after Drucker (and others) stressed
  the role of knowledge as an organization resource, and Senge
 popularized µlearning organizations¶

 Seeds of KM may also be found in business practices like TQM


and BPR to which KM is often compared
The scope of KM

 Today, most companies define the scope of


KM as ±

c   ± KM mechanics (tools for information


 
 
   management)
  
 
   ± KM culture (knowledge as a social activity)
 

± KM systems (knowledge sharing as part of an
organization¶s DN)
KM mechanics

 xnformation management may well be considered


the first wave of KM (and is still often considered
synonymous with KM)

c  
   xnformation management tries to make the right
 
  
  
information available to the right person at the right
 
   time through a variety of database driven information
 

applications

 xnformation management tools try to capture the


human experience of knowledge through the
collecting, classifying, disseminating, searching,
indexing, and power of technology
KM culture

 ll knowledge has a social and evolutionary


facet

c    There is a crying need to continuously


 
 
  
subject knowledge to re-examination and
   modification
 
  
 

 xt is important to keep the human and social
elements of organization involved in all
stored knowledge
KM systems

 KM succeeds fully when it is woven into the


fabric of an organization and becomes
intrinsic to an organizationës processes
c  
 
 
  
 ]ommon practices include G
   ± ëormal KM leadership
 
   ± ëormal rewards and recognition for KM oriented work
 
 ± Tools and mechanisms that encourage knowledge sharing
± Development of knowledge bases
± xntellectual asset management
± Metrics to evaluate KM initiatives
Knowledge Management and
xnformation Technology
 Jhile technology can support KM, it is not
the starting point of a KM program. Make KM
decisions based on who (people), what
c   (knowledge) and why (business objectives).
 
 
   Save the how (technology) for last.
  
 
  
 
  Organizations can attain maturity in KM only
through healthy coexistence of technology,
processes and people.
KNOJLEDGE MNGEMENT: ]Tx xTxES

 1) Searching for knowledge and receiving knowledge


 2) Restructuring the knowledge
 3) Making knowledge explicit
c    4) ssociating the knowledge with the actions
  described in the process model
 
  
    5) Making knowledge available for actions which
 
  
  need it and delivering it to the right agents in the
 right moment
 6) Updating knowledge and change management
 7) Quality management
Knowledge Management and General Management

 ll these tasks cannot be separated from the


general management activities.
 Knowledge is used when actions are
c  
 
performed and actions are organized by the
 
   management.
  
 
    ctions on the other hand change the
 
 knowledge, e.g.
± organizational changes
± change in the employees
± change of the context (new products, customers etc.)
 Therefore knowledge management is a
central element of management.
]Tx xTY (1): Searching and Receiving
Knowledge
 Data, information and knowledge does not come from itself
 Some sources of knowledge are known, others have to be
found
 The management¶s task is to:
± Get an overview over sources and organize the search for
c   them
 
 
  
± Determine the times (or periods) when sources have new
   knowledge
 
   ± Organize the access to and the flow from the sources
 
± Receive the demanded knowledge properly

± ]lassify and receive the knowledge which came in but not
on demand
ources
 Document Oriented Knowledge Structure
 Tables
 ]ontent Oriented Knowledge Structures
 Linguistic tools, Thesaurus etc. are useful.
]Tx xTY (2): Restructuring Knowledge

 The task of the knowledge management is to


organize
± Restructuring
c  
± Pointing out weaknesses and getting other sources
 
 
  
 Restructuring has two aspects:
   ± Restructuring of a single input document
 
  
  ± Embed in or distribute the input over the whole knowledge
 structure

Different agents may need knowledge pieces in different forms


or formats
]Tx xTY (3): Making Knowledge Explicit

 xt is the purpose of data mining techniques to make


knowledge in data bases explicit.

c    The knowledge management has to organize this:


  ± Jhere are weak points ?
 
  
   ± Jhich information can be helpful for improvement ?
 
   ± How to obtain the information ?
 

 Knowledge in texts can at least partially be made
explicit by
± Extracting key words
± extracting phrases
± extracting abstracts
]Tx xTY(4): Jhich Knowledge for Jhat ?

Knowledge in business:
 xs oriented on business processes

 xnfluences partially the general structure of the


processes
c  
 Has to allow a fast and optimal representation of the
 
 
   knowledge in actual contexts
  
 
   xmportant
  Define information goals and a plan to achieve them in

order to have optimal effects

The value of a piece of knowledge is the difference of


costs connected with the action when performed with
or without the knowledge.
]Tx xTY(5): Organizing the Use of Knowledge

 Missing Knowledge creates errors


 Too much knowledge confuses

Knowledge for each task has to be accessible


 for the right persons
c  
   at the right time
 
    at the right place
    in the needed format
 
  
 

This task is very complex and uses different
techniques.
]Tx xTY (6): ]hange Management

 Knowledge is not invariant but undergoes continuous


changes. There are external reasons for this (the
context changes) as well as internal reasons (e.g.
organizational changes).
c  
   These changes have to be reported at the right time
 
   to those agents who need it.
  
 
    The report can be given on demand as well as pro-
 

active.
 The change management organizes this in a
systematic way.
]Tx xTY (7): Quality Management

 Quality decreases over time due to changes


(external as well as internal) if no reaction takes
place.

c    The quality of the processes has to be controlled


  continuously:
 
   ± Observation of the environment data
   ± Observation of the process
 
   ± xnterpretation of observed data on the basis of quality models.
 

 The results of the control are transformed into
actions which re-establish the quality.

 The knowledge manager has to ensure the quality of


the knowledge and has in particular to deal with
knowledge gaps.
Knowledge Management pproaches

 xn a posting to the Knowledge Management


ëorum, Karl-Erik Sveiby identified two
"tracks" of knowledge management:
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Mechanistic approaches to knowledge
management
 Mechanistic approaches to knowledge management are characterized
by the application of technology and resources to do more of the same
better.
ssumptions
± Better accessibility to information is a key, including enhanced
methods of access and reuse of documents (hypertext linking,
databases, full-text search, etc.)
c   ± Networking technology in general (especially intranets), in particular,
  will be key solutions.
 
   ± xn general, technology and sheer volume of information will make it
   work.
 
   ssessment:
  +ve
  relatively easy to implement for corporate "political" reasons
 the technologies and techniques are familiar and easily understood.
-ve
 it¶s simply not clear whether access itself will have a substantial impact
on business performance,
 Unless the knowledge management approach incorporates methods of
leveraging cumulative experience, the net result may not be positive, and
the impact of implementation may be no more measurable than in
traditional paper models.
]ultural/behavioristic approaches to
knowledge management
 Substantial roots in process re-engineering and change management

 tend to view the "knowledge problem" as a management issue. Technology ³


though ultimately essential for managing explicit knowledge resources ³ is not
the solution.

 focus more on innovation and creativity (the "learning organization") than on


leveraging existing explicit resources or making working knowledge explicit.
c  
  Assumptions
 
  
 Organizational behaviors and culture need to be changed
  
 It·s the processes that matter, not the technology.
 
  
   Nothing happens or changes unless a manager makes it happen.

Assessment:
 The cultural factors affecting organizational change have almost certainly been
undervalued, and cultural/behavioristic implementations have shown some
benefits.

 But the cause-effect relationship between cultural strategy and business


benefits is not clear

 Positive results achieved by cultural/behavioristic strategies may not be


sustainable, measurable, cumulative, or replicable
Systematic approaches to knowledge
management
 Systematic approaches to knowledge management retain the traditional faith in
rational analysis of the knowledge problem: the problem can be solved, but new
thinking of many kinds is required.

ssumptions :
± xt¶s sustainable results that matter, not the processes or technology « or your
definition of "knowledge."

c   ±  resource cannot be managed unless it is modeled, and many aspects of the
organization¶s knowledge can be modeled as an explicit resource.
 
 
   ± ]ultural issues are important, but they too must be evaluated systematically.
   Employees may or may not have to be "changed," but policies and work practices
 
   must certainly be changed, and technology can be applied successfully to business
knowledge problems themselves.
 
 ± Knowledge management has an important management component, but it is not an
activity or discipline that belongs exclusively to managers.

ssessment:
+ve:
 rationalists in the business world are taking a systematic approach to solving the
"knowledge problem." You¶ll also find evidence of such approaches as well as a less formal
use of the term u u 
   

 Systematic approaches show the most promise for positive cumulative impact,
measurability, and sustainability.
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